6 skills your child needs when revisiting the topic of ‘Stranger Danger’

Parenting expert Mia Von Scha says that when we think about the horrors that could happen to our children, we generally think about strangers. She adds that we have been conditioned as children and adults not to speak to strangers.

Von Scha says that parents generally tell their children not to talk to strangers, and either implicitly or explicitly tell them that strange men are the greatest threat. However, most paedophiles are not strangers she adds, they can be family members, friends , other children or even women.

When we actually look at the statistics, the majority of your paedophiles are actually not strangers to the child, it’s somebody that you know.

Mia Von Scha, parenting expert

Von Scha says that we need to make children aware that your private parts are private, which means that nobody can touch, look or play with your private parts.

Von Scha highlight 6 tips that parents can use which are better than preaching ‘Stranger Danger.’

1. Carrying themselves with confidence:

We teach confidence by allowing children to do things for themselves, by giving them independence, and by describing their achievements without praising them.

2. Body integrity:

Children need to know that their body is theirs and nobody gets to do anything to it without their consent. Von Scha says that if we really want to train our children about body integrity, we have to start when they are little. She adds that this requires asking if you can wash them, and you need to respect their decision if they say no.

3.Trusting their instincts:

We need to teach our children to tune into this wisdom and to trust it. We do this by listening to them when they say they don’t feel like doing something, or respecting them when they don’t want to be around a particular person

4. Voicing their opinion:

Children need to know that “no” means “no” and the only way to learn this is if we allow them to say it and respect them when they do. As adults, we tend to override children’s decisions says Von Scha. She adds that children can see when adults get to say no but when they say no, it doesn’t seem to count.

The key point to take away is if they say no, it means no. We need them to learn that their no actually means something.

Mia Von Scha, parenting expert

5. Knowing what to do in an emergency:

The best way to teach these skills is to play role playing games or even use puppets or toys to act out different scenarios. Let your kids come up with ideas for what they would do and then discuss these with them.

6. Be able to defend themselves:

I honestly believe that every child should have some martial arts or self-defense training in their lives. Knowing how to handle ourselves in difficult situations gives us the kind of confidence that is very off-putting to predators.

Click on the audio below for more examples...


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